Zacks Investment Research upgraded shares of AeroVironment (NASDAQ:AVAV) from a hold rating to a strong-buy rating in a research report released on Friday morning. Zacks Investment Research currently has $64.00 target price on the aerospace company’s stock.

According to Zacks, “AeroVironment, Inc. designs, develops, produces, operates a portfolio of products and services for government agencies, businesses and consumers. It operates through two segments: Unmanned Aircraft Systems, which focuses primarily on the design, development, production, support and operation of UAS and tactical missile systems that provide situational awareness, multi-band communications, force protection and other mission effects, and Efficient Energy Systems, which focuses primarily on the design, development, production, support and operation of electric energy systems. The Company supplies UAS, tactical missile systems and related services primarily to organizations within the United States Department of Defense. The Company also supplies charging systems and services for electric vehicles, and power cycling and test systems to commercial, consumer and government customers. It serves the U.S. Department of Defense, including the U.S. Army, Marine Corps, Special Operations Command, Air Force, and Navy. “

A number of other analysts have also recently weighed in on the company. Robert W. Baird reissued a hold rating and issued a $35.00 price objective on shares of AeroVironment in a research report on Monday, August 28th. Canaccord Genuity raised their price objective on AeroVironment from $35.00 to $40.00 and gave the stock a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 30th. Jefferies Group raised their price objective on AeroVironment from $29.00 to $37.00 and gave the stock a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, August 30th. Piper Jaffray Companies reaffirmed a neutral rating and set a $36.00 price target on shares of AeroVironment in a research report on Thursday, August 31st. Finally, ValuEngine cut AeroVironment from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, November 15th. Six equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the stock. The stock presently has a consensus rating of Hold and a consensus target price of $44.00.

AeroVironment (NASDAQ:AVAV) traded up $0.09 during trading on Friday, hitting $55.66. The stock had a trading volume of 407,513 shares, compared to its average volume of 484,456. The firm has a market cap of $1,330.00, a PE ratio of 42.42, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 5.82 and a beta of 1.16. AeroVironment has a 52-week low of $24.70 and a 52-week high of $58.23.

AeroVironment (NASDAQ:AVAV) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, December 5th. The aerospace company reported $0.29 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Zacks’ consensus estimate of ($0.01) by $0.30. The firm had revenue of $73.83 million during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $63.53 million. AeroVironment had a return on equity of 8.23% and a net margin of 10.42%. The business’s quarterly revenue was up 47.3% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned ($0.18) EPS. research analysts predict that AeroVironment will post 0.64 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

In other news, Chairman Timothy E. Conver sold 2,000 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, October 5th. The stock was sold at an average price of $53.91, for a total value of $107,820.00. Following the completion of the transaction, the chairman now owns 58,138 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,134,219.58. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which is accessible through this link. Also, Chairman Timothy E. Conver sold 7,600 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, October 4th. The shares were sold at an average price of $54.00, for a total value of $410,400.00. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. In the last ninety days, insiders have sold 36,200 shares of company stock valued at $1,806,496. 11.00% of the stock is currently owned by insiders.

Several hedge funds have recently modified their holdings of AVAV. Janus Henderson Group PLC acquired a new position in shares of AeroVironment in the 2nd quarter valued at about $39,724,000. BlackRock Inc. lifted its holdings in shares of AeroVironment by 3.6% in the 2nd quarter. BlackRock Inc. now owns 3,333,627 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $127,344,000 after buying an additional 116,654 shares during the period. Vident Investment Advisory LLC lifted its holdings in shares of AeroVironment by 31.1% in the 3rd quarter. Vident Investment Advisory LLC now owns 474,428 shares of the aerospace company’s stock valued at $25,676,000 after buying an additional 112,487 shares during the period. Pier Capital LLC acquired a new position in shares of AeroVironment in the 3rd quarter valued at about $6,015,000. Finally, Lord Abbett & CO. LLC purchased a new position in shares of AeroVironment in the 2nd quarter valued at about $3,642,000. 74.65% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.

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About AeroVironment

AeroVironment, Inc designs, develops, produces, supports and operates a portfolio of products and services for government agencies, businesses and consumers. The Company operates through two segments: Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), which focuses primarily on the design, development, production, support and operation of UAS and tactical missile systems that provide situational awareness, multi-band communications, force protection and other mission effects, and Efficient Energy Systems (EES), which focuses primarily on the design, development, production, marketing, support and operation of electric energy systems.

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